It’s another Fitness Friday and today we are focusing on EFFICIENCY — getting the most out of your workout.
For most of my clients, finding enough time to get a good workout is a challenge in and of itself. So rather than move mountains to squeeze in a few extra minutes for exercise we focus on making the best use of the time that is available.
We focus on effectiveness.
My favorite tool for this is BURST fitness – A burst of intense activity followed by a short recovery period.
The beauty of BURST is that you can apply this concept to any activity you enjoy, whether it’s dancing, running, or body weight training.
Here are 7 moves you can use in any combination you want to create a fun, exiting and effective BURST routine that will keep you burning calories long after you’ve moved on the other important parts of your day.
All of these activities are family friendly so no excuses! A family that exercises together, laughs together and stays healthy together 🙂
The focus of these exercises is cardio so make sure you get your heart rate up during your BURST phase and have a blast! Remember the formula for BURST: high intensity for 3/4 of the time, low intensity / rest of 1/4 of the time. For example — 30 seconds HI, 10 seconds rest or 45 seconds HI, 15 seconds rest.
No sophisticated moves needed here. Grab your kids, crank up the music and dance your heart out. To apply the BURST technique to your dance off use a variation of freeze dance: dance as hard as you can, swinging arms and legs, and, yes, go ahead and toss your hair around, rock out as much as you want for 45 seconds, then walk around and catch your breath for 15 seconds. Crank it up again and keep that cycle going for 10 to 15 minutes or throw in some other activities from the list above to spice things up.
You don’t need an actual jump rope for this one but if you have it use it. If you don’t or you are exercising inside, move your arms as though you were holding a jump rope and jump for 45 seconds, then skip for 15 seconds and crank it up again. Challenge yourself during your burst phase: jump as fast as you can, as high as you can, bring knees super high in a sprint like fashion… be as creative as you like just keep moving at full intensity for your entire BURST phase.
Side to Side Jumps / Ski jumps
These are a fabulous way to get ready for tearing up the slopes this winter. Keep your knees and ankle loose so as not to injure yourself. Stand tall and arms bent as though you were holding ski poles, jump from side to side keeping knees and feet together. You can make this move more challenging in one of two ways: deepen your jump, going a little further out each time or jump higher. Walk in place during your rest phase.
A timeless exercise that’s as fin as you want to make it. Start standing tall, feet together arms by your side. Jump opening legs so you land with feet shoulder width apart, clap hands over head. Return to start position. Challenge yourself. Go as fast as you can without loosing form or for a real challenge try a few air jacks — do the “open” part of your jump in the air.
Burpees are one of those moves I love to hate. They are killer but they are super effective as they really offer a full body workout. The change in plane gives you the cardio. But you also benefit from a solid core, leg, arm and shoulder workout, especially if you add the push up. Start standing feet shoulder width apart. Squat placing hands on the floor while shooting feet behind you, landing in a push up position. Do a push up if you want the added challenge. Jump back to standing, reaching high in the air. Repeat.
If you love to run but can’t get outside these are a blast. Stand tall and run in place as fast as you can, swinging arms back and forth and lifting knees high. Keep “running” for your BUSRT phase, walk in place for your rest phase. You are more than welcome, of course, to take these outside and do an actual sprint, keeping your stride powerful.
Ah my favorites! No not really I also love to hate these. Start in push up position, hands on the floor, back straight, core, glutes, and hamstrings engaged, head neutral, looking at a spot somewhere around your hands. Keeping your body position as straight as you can, bring knees into your chest in a running motion. Push as hard as you can for your BUSRT phase, stand up and walk for your rest phase.
Have fun with these. Mix them up and add your favorites to keep everyone involved engaged and enjoying this special workout. Your total workout can last as long as 20 minutes but if time is tight and you can only dedicate 10 minutes to this DO it!
What’s your favorite way to Boost the Burn of you workout? Do you have a go-to BURST move you’d like to share?